What thoughts

As a single footstep will not make a path on the earth, so a single thought will not make a pathway in the mind. To make a deep physical path, we walk again and again. To make a deep mental path, we must think over and over the kind of thoughts we wish to dominate our lives.

Henry David Thoreau

Making the weather

It is my personal approach that creates the climate. It is my daily mood that makes the weather. I possess tremendous power to make life miserable or joyous. I can be a tool of torture or an instrument of inspiration, I can humiliate or humour, hurt or heal. In all situations, it is my response that decides whether a crisis is escalated or de-escalated, and a person is humanized or de-humanized. If we treat people as they are, we make them worse. If we treat people as they ought to be, we help them become what they are capable of becoming.

Dr. Haim G. Ginott, 1922 – 1973,  School teacher,  Child psychologist and psychotherapist,  Teacher and Child: A Book for Parents and Teachers

Sometimes falsely attributed to Goethe. Thanks to Kim for pointing this out.

A new month, a clear mind

Our news these days has a continual fearful, –  or as we see this week – an angry or resentful tone. We have to work to ensure that it does not become the dominant energy of this day or this new month.

The water of the mind, how clear it is!
Gazing at it, the boundaries are invisible.
But as soon as even a slight thought arises,
ten thousand images crowd it.
Attach to them, and they become real.
Be carried by them, and it will be difficult to return.
How painful to see a person trapped in the ten-fold delusions.

Ryokan, Sōtō Zen Buddhist monk,  1758 – 1831

Natural rhythms

In meditation we’re learning from Nature rather than from society, so you have to train in terms of wilderness awareness: to learn from your bodily intelligence. Otherwise, if you’re trying to get your business-model, ‘get it done’ mind,  to take you to samādhi (concentration or calm) it’s like riding an elephant as if you’re driving a taxi: you implant stress onto a natural process and that constricts your awareness. 

Ajahn Sucitto